Review : Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

Clear voice

With ready-made sound on the voice assistant, only the language barrier stands between us and the automated work tasks.

Amazon Echo
Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

Our verdict

A compact and appealing appearance, clear speech sound and also a stable and good control system compared to other devices. Two can be paired in stereo.
The sound is tame on music, you have to take some detours to get the speaker connected in Norway, and Alexa does not understand Norwegian.
  • Type: Smart speaker
  • Management system: Amazon Alexa
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Connection: 3.5mm aux
  • Speaker element: 2.5 ”bass, 1” treble
  • Dimensions: 14.8 x 8.8 x 8.8 cm
  • Colors: black, gray and many more
  • Other: Works in stereo pairs
  • Web: amazon.com
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Price: £ 39

After drawing an Amazon account with a street address in a supported country (we used U.K.), the initial setup is straightforward and intuitive. If you have a smart product that you do not find with “add device”, then it may still exist as a “skill”. We noticed this, for example, with our robot vacuum cleaner from iRobot, which Alexa installed as a skill.

Control of smart lights (Philips Hue) in the desired room is playfully easy, the robot vacuum cleaner is sent out on a sweep, and the system behaves very stably.

Since we do not have an Amazon Music account, we have not tested this, but every time we want to play music, we get the error message that the service is not connected. If, on the other hand, we ask Alexa to play a given song on Spotify, then the song will come. Mostly. Sometimes the song is not found, even though we know it is on Spotify and Alexa pronounces the name correctly. Tidal is otherwise officially supported by Alexa, but not in Norway.

The sound is perfectly fine, with clear speech. But no pronounced musician, until it becomes too flat and unengaging. Fortunately, the speaker can be connected to better sound systems with Bluetooth or cable. You can alternatively connect two Echo speakers in stereo, the money should then perhaps be spent on a fatter speaker.

Conclusion

Echo is a nice little speaker, with a great finish and good design. It does little of itself and blends in with the interior. Little of it unfortunately also makes it sonic. Clear speech is all well and good, but the music sounds in the flattest layer. But in fact nothing flatter than a couple of competitors with larger physical goals. Ease of use is very good, if you master English and can live with the fact that not all services and products are supported in Norway.

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